DISCLAIMER: The following is of fictional work and should not be taken seriously or be accounted for actual facts in any way. It is not aim to confuse or mislead anyone for that matter. It is not meant to offend or disrespect any of the artists mentioned in the work either. Its purpose only serves to entertain and share with other fans who also like those artists. Thank you for reading.
Cyndi had to push her way through the mall, fighting the crowd. When she finally reached backstage and found her team, she took her sunglasses off and glimpsed the area. Will and Sandrine were flirting at one corner of the room while they got ready. No Jiro. Vic and Janine were at another corner, possibly talking about their upcoming promotional event. Or something totally different from that. A secret get together maybe? It didn’t matter.
“Good that you made it!” Her agent’s voice rang into her ears. “Where were you?”
Cyndi turned back to face her. “Is Jiro here yet?”
“No, Fahrenheit are going to be here later,” The helpful response came.
Cyndi tossed her bag aside and began getting ready.
“We have a last minute change,” The event organizer announced to them. “Regarding Fahrenheit.”
Cyndi stopped brushing her hair. Fahrenheit included Jiro, right?
“Aaron won’t be able to make it back in time,” The organizer continued.
Cyndi let go of her breath. She did not realize she was holding it.
“Showtime in half an hour.”
Yet Jiro wasn’t present.
“Fahrenheit got delayed in traffic,” Another announcement came half an hour later.
“We’ll just go first,” Will volunteered–since he managed to peel his eyes away from Sandrine already.
So the show went on with the host announcing the event’s beginning–and introducing the guests afterward. They picked some of the children for the upcoming skit. Cyndi did all that in monotone but still managed a bright, sweet smile for the camera. The camera flashes and glares were blinding her. However, that was the least of her concern. The next hour continued in a buzz. They had a break soon–and they had taken full advantage of it by piling into the spacious room to cool down.
“Those kids sure are energetic,” Sandrine said, sitting down at a chair and fanning herself with her hands.
“Don’t tell me you’re getting old,” Will teased, settling at a chair next to her.
Will handed both Cyndi and Sandrine a bottle of water he fetched at a nearby cooler. A true gentleman he was. Cyndi was almost glad that he was considerate enough to get her a water bottle as well, considering how much attention he paid to any of them in the last few hours.
“What’s wrong?” Sandrine asked, turning to her with a smile.
“Nothing,” Cyndi replied, having opened her water bottle already. It usually took her faster than that to open her water bottle.
“That was so funny,” Calvin’s voice boomed into the room at that time. “How could they have mistaken you for…” His laughter had drowned out his next words.
Cyndi snapped to alertness at that time. No, it wasn’t because of Calvin’s loud voice. Only partly. His presence meant that Jiro had arrived. And yes, Jiro was stuck in between Calvin and Chun again. Cyndi got up from her place, her water bottle abandoned also.
“Where have you guys been?” Cyndi demanded as soon as she could be heard.
“Your boyfriend was mistaken for someone’s husband earlier,” Calvin piped, having recovered already from his coughing fit–thanks to Chun’s effective thumbing.
Cyndi felt that Chun didn’t thumb hard enough on Calvin’s back. Calvin was still able to run his mouth.
“I think she’s mad,” Chun contributed helpfully, pulling Calvin aside. “Let’s get ready.”
“Five minutes to next show,” The organizer’s voice informed them once more.
How could that be? They just sat down. Cyndi still had her eyes on Jiro.
“Oh, hey,” Jiro said, shrugging his shoulders. “I better check with my manager real quick before we get out there.”
Clean exit. How convenient. Cyndi scowled behind his back. She turned back to her water bottle to find it missing. “What happened to my water bottle?”
“Will thought you didn’t want it so he drank it,” Sandrine answered.
That pig, she scolded silently. He would’ve devoured the bottle too if it wasn’t inedible. Just a few minutes ago, she thought he was a gentleman. How misleading was that? And where was he now? She scanned the room with her radar eyes to find Will and Vic engaged in some sort of conversation–each holding a source of food in their hands. Men and food.
“Back out front, everyone!” The annoying organizer chirped once more.
Cyndi’s princess smile clicked on automatically as soon as she reached the door and the voices of the crowd cheered them on once more.
“For this next part, we will let our performers choose from this hat what their roles will be for the short play,” The host said as soon as they were all lined up on the stage again.
What short play? Cyndi turned to Sandrine for an answer to be greeted with Calvin’s sunshine smile. When had he switched places with Sandrine? She scowled back at him before turning to look straight ahead at the innocent little kids.
“All right,” The host continued. “Who wants to pick first?”
Jiro stepped out of line and walked toward the host–who was waving the hat ever-so-annoyingly at them. “I will.”
“Da Dong! Da Dong! Da Dong!” The crowd cheered him on as he reached into the hat.
“All right, he has one,” The host said–as if it wasn’t obvious already. “We’ll know the result in a bit.”
Jiro turned and waved at the crowd once more before heading back inside.
“Next please,” The host encouraged, waving the annoying black hat again.
Calvin and Chun followed in that order. Will still managed to carry on a conversation with Sandrine the whole while they were waiting for their turn.
“Something wrong?” Vic asked, sliding a hand around her shoulders as she was lost in thoughts. “Who offended our princess?”
He was definitely brave. The crowd was there. And cameras were clicking. Like those paparazzi were shy about spinning their web of stories.
“Stop teasing,” Janine warned Vic, her eyes chiding him.
Vic’s hand slid off Cyndi’s shoulder and dove into the hat. “I could feel my luck today.” He had broadcasted that last bit to the crowd. And he was gone soon after a little mischievous smile.
Janine gave Cyndi a pat for support as they watched Vic disappeared and it was Cyndi’s turn.
“You’re not supposed to show it to the others,” Janine whispered into Cyndi’s ears when she was done with her own turn. “We’re supposed to dress our part and come out with the surprise.”
“Oh,” Cyndi said lamely.
“And we’re supposed to go to a particular door for our costume also,” Janine continued, taking sympathy on Cyndi’s lack of alertness these past hours. “Since we’re not supposed to let one another know either in case we get excited and blurt it out by accident before the kids are able to guess who has what.”
Cyndi nodded automatically as Janine pushed the door in. She let Cyndi pass first.
They were out fifteen minutes later–or so. Cyndi wasn’t paying attention. Like she had paid any attention since she arrived. And someone here knew why. But did not care to comfort her. Instead, left her to fend off for herself. Again. She was feeling stuffy under the costume already.
“All right,” The host said, trying to get everyone’s attention again. “This is the best part, kids.”
Cyndi rolled her eyes under her suit.
“Alice in Wonderland is now in production,” The host continued in that overly cheerful and sugary voice again.
HUH?! What?! She thought it was just a normal Easter celebration they held and their duty was to entertain the kids with different games? Oh yeah, almost forgot, there was also the play. Short play. But who picked this production? Where was Janine? She needed more information. No, wait. They did not know of each other’s identity under all these stuffy and heavy suits. Was Janine the cute white bunny? No, too tall, she deducted. No, everyone was too tall or too filling anyway. The suits were made for all for one size or something. Or was that one for all size? Whatever. How come no one gave her any script?
“Now, kids,” The host resumed his enthusiasm. “Do not think that we’re putting this up ahead of time. This is going to be acted out by our special guests with their creative minds at work here and now. So let’s see how they would fend for themselves. You will get to vote on who is your favorite at the end of this little show.” The host paused for effect. Dramatic emphasis perhaps? “You will also get to guess who is under those suits afterward. Then they will reveal themselves.”
Everyone clapped at that time, except for the kids. The kids were screaming too loud or were too overly hyper to even settle for clapping. After the host stepped back in his safe and distant corner of the stage, the show began.
“What’s this?” A whining voice asked upon discovering a cake on a table.
What? Cyndi was confused again. She thought they started with the rabbit leading Alice down the hole. Why was Alice at the table? What was that silly white bunny doing then?
Everything went in a breeze as things moved forward. Cyndi waited for her turn to arrive as the scenes went by and each of her fellow colleagues had their witty moment. She had yet to guess two people. Will was being too obvious. Flirting with Sandrine still–even during the play, especially when he was supposed to pretend he was sleeping. What in the world was Vic doing? He wasn’t supposed to appear around that scene. He didn’t care. He was too drunk on the crowd’s possessive worshiping of him–even when he was supposed to be portraying such a stingy character. Well, one that was in the constant fear of cats. And carried an attitude. Who were the annoying overly hyperactive twins then? She tried to guess who were behind those costumes as she delivered her made-up lines. She tossed another hat out of nowhere. Somehow, she was glad her attitude was on high today. It suited her bordering from normality character for the play. Janine was sure convincing taking on a role reversed from her gender. Like there were many female characters in the story. At least not the part they were portraying. So she was the annoying CC, not the cute white bunny. Who was the white bunny then? She sat back in her chair during the tea party and played host the whole time as she circulated her brain for more clues of the remaining characters.
“And that wraps up our little play,” The host announced.
And they had an uproar among the crowd.
Fifteen minutes later, the bunny and Cyndi held the most creative mind and the best performance prizes in their hands–respectively. The others cheered them on. They bowed and then stepped back into the line.
“Now, we have to guess who is who,” The host reminded them all.
Cyndi’s mood had improved since the start of the play. The little kids were just so cute to care anymore about someone’s failure to keep his promise to her. And she did not realize it until the others were calling Jiro’s name again. She turned to the bunny. So he was the bizarre yet cute bunny. She could almost forgive him at the moment.
After some more guessing and all their roles were revealed, they piled back into the backstage area. They had to change and get ready for the finale. A song they had rehearsed together several weeks already–between other events they had to attend.
Another roar of cheer and applause were heard among the crowd as they finished the last verse together.
“Thanks everyone for your support and encouragement,” Jiro began his little speech after the crowd quieted down already.
He wanted to thank the crowd. It was only appropriate since they did vote for him in the past skit.
“I have something else to announce today,” Jiro continued, his voice cheerful and lively. “I want to share with everyone that I have found my happiness at last.”
As if on cue, Calvin and Chun stepped out of line. Will and Vic were even getting ready to harmonize with one another. They were singing Cyndi’s favorite song. Even Janine and Sandrine were chiming in with some verses, contributing mostly as background vocalists. Cyndi was in full shocked mode at that time. Like she couldn’t move. But she had to. She turned to Jiro with a look of bewilderment while he joined in with the singing. Calvin and Chun handed her a bouquet of her favorite flowers and a box of her favorite candies–respectively. Then they stepped aside and made way for Jiro.
“I told you I will keep my promise,” He said into his own microphone as he was face to face with her at last. “I will make our relationship known to the public–and accept any criticisms with you by my side. I will always cherish you and give you happiness to the best of my abilities.”
Cyndi felt her eyes tearing up as she tried to speak. She could only hug him back as the crowd cheered them on.
They were all in on it. And they never let on. Not even the pig Will. Or the loud-mouth Calvin. She could almost forgive them both. Temporarily.
The song was finally finished as both Jiro and Cyndi pulled back and turned to the crowd–their hands still linked. They felt the shutters of cameras and the loud cheering echoing throughout this section of the mall. Even the little kids who were only interested in the little prizes of today’s fun games cheered them on. It was the most memorable experience for Cyndi. Even beating the time she made it into the industry and had gained many fans. Gaining fans was easy, but having loyal fans was rare. And they were so lucky to have their fans’ support.
Cyndi turned to give Jiro another loving look as the host took the center spot again. Jiro returned her look with one of his cute boyish smiles.
AUTHOR’S NOTE: Hope everyone enjoyed the short story. I did not reveal the characters on purpose, except for Jiro because it was required in the rule. However, could everyone guess from the clues who was who?
Alice in Wonderland characters:
*The Mad Hatter
*The March Hare
The stars who appeared in here and was in the short play (organized by alpha based on last name):
*Chang/Zhang Rong Rong (Sandrine Pinna)
If you want to know the result of who is which character, I’ll post it up on Sunday, April 10th.
OMG! It’s April 12 and where in the world is the result, right? SORRY, I was caught up with some things and forgot all about it! Here goes the result below:
*Alice – Sandrine
*Cheshire Cat – Janine
*Dormouse – Will
*The Mad Hatter – Cyndi
*The March Hare – Jiro
*The Mouse – Vic
*Tweedledum – Calvin
*Tweedledee – Chun
© Thursday, March 31st, 2011